In our fourth and final blog post about new CollectA prehistoric animal models for 2022, we announce that a new version of the CollectA Deluxe 1:40 scale Triceratops will be introduced. The figure represents the species Triceratops horridus, the geologically older of the two Triceratops species formally recognised.

The model is due to be in stock at Everything Dinosaur around mid-2022.

CollectA Deluxe Triceratops horridus
The new for 2022 CollectA Deluxe Triceratops dinosaur model.

The image (above), shows the prototype, pre-production model the actual figure will have an articulated jaw.

T. horridus – Horrible Horned Face

Triceratops horridus is known from the Lower Hell Creek Formation dating from approximately 67.5 million years ago. Triceratops bones and teeth are relatively common in this part of the Hell Creek Formation and studies have shown that Triceratops fossils make up about 40% of the dinosaur fossil material. The robust skulls preserve relatively well and compared to its body size, the skull of this horned dinosaur was proportionately one of the largest known of any vertebrate. CollectA have chosen to give their new Triceratops a muted colour tone, with countershading on the underside. The exceptions to this are the neck frill and the side of the face with its large patches of white.

Those white flashes certainly give “horrible three-horned face” a striking appearance.

A close-up view of the head of the new for 2022 Collect Deluxe Triceratops.
A close-up view of the head of the new for 2022 CollectA Deluxe Triceratops model.

A Model Based on the Latest Scientific Evidence

Although Triceratops is a very familiar dinosaur to members of the public, after all, it has appeared in films, television documentaries, novels, video games and even on stamps, vertebrate palaeontologists acknowledge that they still have a lot to learn about “three-horned face”.

There are lots of Triceratops fossils to found in the famous Hell Creek and Lance Formations but very few articulated, specimens have been excavated. The discovery of a superb T. horridus specimen in 2014 has helped palaeontologists to piece together more information about this iconic prehistoric animal.

The specimen was collected from private land in Montana (USA). The bones found represent about 87% of the entire skeleton and it will form part of a major dinosaur display at Melbourne Museum. The skull and neck frill are the most complete of any known Triceratops specimen (>99% complete) and the assembled frill measures over 1.48 metres wide.

The Triceratops fossil being excavated.
The Triceratops fossils in the quarry. The skeleton is slowly being excavated and the bones exposed. Picture credit: Museums Victoria.

The design team at CollectA have utilised some of the research into the Montana specimen along with recently published studies, reports and photographs on other Triceratops horridus specimens to create a model that reflects the latest scientific thinking.

Commenting on the significance of the Montana Triceratops specimen, Dr Erich Fitzgerald (Museums Victoria’s senior curator of palaeontology) stated:

“This is the Rosetta Stone for understanding Triceratops. Despite its popularity, there are still many unanswered questions about the anatomy and palaeobiology of Triceratops. This fossil comprises hundreds of bones including a complete skull and the entire vertebral column which will help us unlock mysteries about how this species lived 67 million years ago.”

The Skin of Triceratops

The new for 2022 CollectA Deluxe Triceratops replica has skin textures and scales that reflect what has been recorded in Triceratops horridus skin impressions.

The preserved skin of a Triceratops specimen on display at the Houston Museum of Natural Science (Texas, USA) indicates that this horned dinosaur had skin unlike any other ornithschian. It had substantial hexagonal tubercles (rounded, prominent scales) along with additional enormous (>10 cm across) tubercles with conical projections.

These skin impressions come from a specimen excavated in Wyoming and nick-named “Lane”. No formal scientific description has been published but the photographs that have been made available suggest that Triceratops had skin somewhat reminiscent of a Saltasaurus (titanosaur).

Model designer Anthony Beeson explained:

“The new CollectA model incorporates polygonal rosettes with central nipple-scales.”

CollectA Deluxe Triceratops (new for 2022) skin impressions
A close-up view of the skin texture on the new for 2022 CollectA Deluxe 1:40 scale Triceratops figure. The details on the skin reflect what is known from the fossil record.

Model Measurements

The new for 2022 CollectA Deluxe Triceratops horridus measures 28 cm in length and those impressive brow horns are some 13.6 cm off the ground. The figure has been given a scale of 1:40.

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur confirmed that this model is scheduled to be available around the middle of next year (2022).

To view the range of CollectA Prehistoric Life figures available from Everything Dinosaur: CollectA Prehistoric Life.

To view the range of CollectA Deluxe prehistoric animals available from Everything Dinosaur: CollectA Deluxe Prehistoric Animal Models.

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